The power of narratives

Narratives, or stories, are an innate part of human lives and human history. There are no cultures on Earth without stories. While other animals can communicate with each other, humans are truly unique in that they can tell stories.

When we die, the only thing that is left is our stories. So, make them the best stories possible (The Old People).


Our lives are lived through stories. We tell versions of events to friends, highlighting the parts of the events we want to emphasise. We tell narratives of our lives online, through social media, and in physical forms through diaries and scrapbooks.

For entertainment, we read novels, play video games steeped in narrative and watch movies. Some of us even make stories and characters through virtual realities. We listen to news stories and read media posts about sports and movie stars.

Baby, Read, Play, Reading, Playing, Toys

Teachers, leaders and religious leaders from all cultures have used narratives to teach cultural laws, social expectations, moral lessons and religious beliefs. That is because humans are more likely to listen to stories and more likely to remember them. They are also used to persuade us to sell products or to influence our decisions.

Old, Book, Bible, Religion, Ornament

Narratives are much more likely to persuade us for a number of reasons. Dr Marg Rogers explains why in this audio recording.

(audio file - no pictures)

As humans, being able to tell our own stories or have a story to explain what is happening in our life is important. This is why we need to support children's narratives as they face transitions in their lives.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Last modified: Wednesday, 7 February 2024, 11:43 AM